New law master in Governance of Migration and Diversity in Leiden

leiden law

How do we ensure that future lawyers have broad knowledge of migration? This is where the new law master in Governance of Migration and Diversity comes in. From September 2024, students will be able to pursue this new master at Leiden University's Faculty of Law. The new master comes from the joint Leiden-Delft-Erasmus program Governance of Migration and Diversity.

The master's structure is multidisciplinary and trains students in the legal aspects of migration, immigrant 'integration', asylum, anti-racism, and diversity. Students are taught from different academic disciplines such as sociology and public administration in Rotterdam, history in Leiden and development studies at the International Institute of Social Studies in The Hague. The master is coordinated by the Leiden-Delft-Erasmus Centre Governance of Migration and Diversity.

Master of Laws

The master-track Governance of Migration and Diversity already exists for some time but uniquely, this track at the Leiden Law School gives students upon completion the master title LL.M. (Latin Legum Magister, Master of Laws) and access to the so-called toga professions (lawyer, prosecutor, judge), depending, of course, on their undergraduate education.

   We have seen for a number of years that there is tremendous pressure on our existing courses in migration.'
moritz jesseProf. Moritz Jesse is the coordinator of the new master's program and explains the new program's added value.

What prompted this master?

'In today's times and in particular today's political climate, we need lawyers who have broad knowledge of migration and not just knowledge of 'the law.' With our multidisciplinary approach as part of a full-fledged law program with civil effect, we train lawyers with this unique master who ultimately also have knowledge of politics and history related to migration issues. There is a profound need for that today.'

How did it become clear that there is a societal need for these legal scholars?

'We have seen for a number of years that there is tremendous pressure on our existing courses in migration. Students often ask why there is still such a limited range of legal master programs on this subject. We have also surveyed law firms, courts, and, for example, ministries in The Hague. They were all enthusiastic about our new, multidisciplinary approach and program. You can't separate migration law from political and social issues these days!'

   You can't separate migration law from political and social issues these days.'

Do we see too little multidisciplinary knowledge of migration, asylum, anti-racism in the courtroom and legal policy positions at the moment?

'That is indeed the case and this is finally being addressed by our new LL.M.. You can often only grasp and understand legal issues in migration with proficient knowledge of other disciplines. This is also crucial for lawyers going to work in ministries in The Hague, or at the European Commission in Brussels, or as policy makers elsewhere.'

Can law students from other universities also pursue this master?

'Any student with a bachelor's degree in law (undergraduate LL.B. or similar) is welcome! The new program is part of the multidisciplinary GMD master's program. Our students will become a part of the great group of students who joins the GMD program every year - they will all get to meet in the joint courses. Our new multidisciplinary LL.M. track of the GMD master's program essentially completes the GMD program. We look forward to finally seeing lawyers with GMD certificates as well!'

Europa Institute

The master is housed at the Europa Institute of Leiden University. The Institute conducts scientific research, provides education and provides legal advice to the private and public sectors. The coordinator of the new LL.M. program is  Jean Monnet Professor Dr. Moritz Jesse. For more information visit our webpagina or send an email to

More information:
Leiden-Delft-Erasmus Centre Governance of Migration and Diversity
Europa Instituut

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